Class of: 2016
High school: École F.A.C.E.
Current profession: Conductor and artistic director
Just a few years since graduating from Marianopolis, Francis Choiniere ’16 has taken the classical music scene by storm. Named as one of the CBC’s “30 hot Canadian classical musicians under 30” in 2020, Francis is a versatile musician, conductor, concert producer, pianist, and composer.
His career began flourishing during his time at the College when he co-founded and produced concerts for L’Orchestre Philharmonique et Choeur des Mélomanes (OPCM). The ensemble has since grown, receiving invitations to perform with world-renowned international artists including Andrea Bocelli, Hans Zimmer and Sarah Brightman. The OPCM performs three annual concerts at Place des Arts, contributing to Montreal’s cultural music scene and providing performance opportunities for emerging artists. His experience in building this non-profit orchestra gave him the tools he needed to start GFN Productions, a national entertainment company that produces film, classical and pop concerts, including music from Lord of the Rings, Star Wars, Titanic, and Fantasia among others.
Thanks to the Marianopolis Music program’s unique partnership with the prestigious Schulich School of Music at McGill University, Francis had many rewarding opportunities. “In my first year at Marianopolis, I took part in McGill University’s Chorus for a performance of Brahms’ Requiem in collaboration with the Orchestre de l’Université de Montréal, uniting over 150 singers and musicians on stage. This powerful performance truly marked me and is one of the experiences that inspired me to start a career in choral and orchestral conducting.”
Among the classes that prepared him to pursue this goal, he credits his music technology class with Professor Cory McKay as having a lasting impact, sparking his interest in the more technological side of music making. His English classes proved to be of great value, as they helped to improve the quality of his writing. What’s more, the connections he forged while at the College have remained very valuable post-graduation.
“Every student at Marianopolis has incredible potential and these connections will help you further along in your career.”Francis Choinière ’16
Francis keeps in touch with Marianopolis today. In December 2021, the College community was thrilled to welcome him and his orchestra back to campus for a live concert – a special thank-you that our teachers and staff will never forget.